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Anya talks her way into the Finals of the Chrystall Prize

On 30 January, Mrs Lloyd-Hughes, Anya Grayson and Kimran Singh-Sall travelled to Newcastle High School to represent Sheffield Girls’ in the semi-finals of the highly regarded GDST Public Speaking Competition, the Chrystall Prize, in which Year 11 students speak for up to seven minutes on their allocated topic and then are asked questions by the audience for up to three minutes.

After extensive auditions in school, Anya went on to take part in the competition as our speaker, with runner up Kimran Singh-Sall as supporter and deputy speaker.  Anya faced four other speakers from different GSDT schools: Newcastle, Nottingham, Belvedere and Birkenhead. The competition was fierce!

All of the competitors were terrifyingly well-prepared and spoke very eloquently, handling questions from the audience skilfully after their speeches.  Anya’s topic was ‘We Live in Hope’.  Her final point was "Nothing can be done without hope... But hope alone is not enough... We need action!”

Anya’s point obviously held true, as she won the semi-final and goes forward to the final of the competition at Notting Hill and Ealing High School in March.

Anya commented, ‘Even though it was scary, I feel that the experience was amazing and has really improved my speaking skills. One of the best moments was when some of the audience told me how inspired they were by my speech! I am now nervously looking forward to the final…’

The Chrystall Prize is named after Chrystall Carter, Legal Adviser to the Trust and then Deputy Legal Secretary, until her sudden and untimely death in 1999.  This competition was set up by her husband in her memory, to mark her commitment to the girls themselves, her pleasure in their success and her belief in the power of argument.  The winner will receive a £100 book token.

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